How do I enter Multi-Title Trade Paperback Issues?
Option 2: Summary TPB Entry

Realms allows you to enter multi-title trade paperback (one where the issues included come from several different titles) in several ways, varying by the amount of detail you wish to enter for the issues contained in the TPB.

Below is an explanation of what I call the Summary Version of the TPB Entry process (intermediate level of detail - allows for tracking of TPB contents, but no detail beyond that).  You also have the option of using use the No Detail version (least amount of entry, but no issue specific info), or the Detail Version (most detailed entry, where TPB contents are entered just like regular issues, with some minor differences to insure data accuracy of your collection).

TPB Entry - Summary Version:

Let's use, as an example, the Uncanny X-Men: Mutant Massacre TPB from Marvel.  You can also use this window to enter single Title TPBs that you enter as their own title, for example, the Preacher TPBs - click here for details on how these differ from the multi-title TPBs.

On the issue detail window, there is a TPB issues field, where you can enter the issues included in a trade paperback (1 - 6, for example).  This works fine for TPBs where the included issues are all from the same title (Preacher, for example).

tpb_btn.png (571 bytes)

If records already exist for the TPB, they will display under the TPB Issues field when you click on it or tab to it, if the data is too big to fit in the field itself.

tpb_display.png (3678 bytes)

When the TPB includes issues from multiple titles, to enter this information, click the TPB Issues button.  This will bring up the Multi-title TPB issues window (see below), where you can enter the titles and issues included (BTW, the Mutant massacre example may not be accurate as I don't actually own this TPB).

tpb_window.png (8689 bytes)

The Multi-Title TPB issue works a little different than most in that the entries are made directly into the list.  There is no "properties" window, so to speak.  I chose to do it this way because of the limited information entered for each issue.  It just seemed like overkill in this case to have a separate properties window for data entry.

NOTE:  The Missing Issues report will include these records in it's determination of missing issues if you turn the Include in Missing Issues check box on.  The MI report sorts these records by Part Number, then by the numeric value of the Issue Number.  So, for the report to use these accurately, the part numbers must be in the correct order.   In edition, single title TPBs entered as their own titles must be entered a little differently to get the MI report to work properly.

The following fields are available on the Multi-Title TPB window:

Series Title
Pretty self explanatory - this is the title of the comic.  A drop down list will appear here, the same as everywhere else where you enter title info.  However, what is different is that you can enter a title that is not on the list, since you may not necessarily collect the original title that's included in the TPB.  FYI, the list will display the titles as they appear on the Issue Detail window, based on whatever filter is applied there.
Issue Number
Again, pretty obvious - the issue number of the individual issue included in the TPB.   You can also enter a range here if it makes sense.  This is more likely with single title TPBs.
 
Part number
Enter the part in the TPB that this issue is.  This field will default to the row number - the first row will default to part 1, 2nd, part 2, etc.  It is important that these be entered in the correct order for the Missing Issues report to process them correctly.
 
Total Parts (issues) included in the TPB
Enter the total number of issues / parts included in this TPB.  This number will be the same on every line.  Realms defaults to 6 on the first line, and then defaults to whatever you last typed in.  So, if on the first line, you change that six to 8, for example, the rest of the lines will default to 8..

Comments
You can enter any additional information about the individual issue here.  You can increase either the height or the width (or both) of the column to make data entry easier.

Features and Functions
Many of the functions described below apply not only to Trade Paperbacks, but to many of the data entry windows in Realms.

New button
Click this button to clear the fields and prepare to enter a new record.  Realms should add a new line at the bottom of the list, and position the cursor in the Title field.  If you move to the last row, either by clicking on any cell in that row, or by tabbing, or arrow keying to it, Realms will do this behind the scenes for you.  A new row being added has an asterisk in the leftmost selector column.

Save button
Click this button on any data entry window to save any changes you have made. Realms will enable this field when it detects you have made changes. In addition, it will warn you if you make changes without saving.

Delete button
Click this button on any data entry window to delete the currently selected record(s). Realms will always verify your deletion request before actually deleting the record.

Refresh button
Click this button to refresh the data that appears in the window. This is especially useful if you manually change the part numbers, and want to get everything back in the correct order.

Export button
Click this button on any window that contains a list (like this one) to export the data in the list to an html file.  Nowadays, html files can be read/edited by pretty much any application - Internet Explorer (display only, no editing), Excel, Word, PowerPoint.   So, this is a useful way to get a hard copy, or email the info.
Print button
Click this button on any window to print the report associated with the window. If multiple reports could apply, you will be asked which to print.

Help button
Realms has a pretty complete help system built in, making use of on line Cue Cards that tell you about each field and button. On certain windows, the Cue Cards are unavailable (technical reasons you're probably not interested in). On those windows, you can click the help button, or right mouse click on any field/button to get help.

Close button
Click this button to close the currently active window. You can also us the normal Windows close options as well.

List of TPB Issues
The list portion of this windows displays all the issues currently entered for this TPB (so, the first time you go into this window, this part will be empty). You can move from issue to issue by clicking on any row in the list, or using the tab and arrow keys. You can also edit data right in the list and add and delete records from here.

Single Title TPBs entered as their own titles

Many people, myself included, enter TPBs as separate titles, instead as issues of the title they contain.  For example, I have Preacher entered as a title, and I also have Preacher: Gone to Texas (TPB) entered as a separate title.  If I want the issues contained in Preacher: Gone to Texas (TPB) (issues 1 - 7) to be used in the Missing Issues report for the title Preacher so that issues 1 - 7 will not show up on the report, I can use the Multi-Title TPB window to do that.

But, because of the sorting, you must enter the issues a s a range (1-7) as opposed to entering individual issues with separate part numbers.  Otherwise, if you have several TPBs for the same title (again Preacher is a good example), the issues will not appear in the correct order, and the MI report will be incorrect.  For example, if you also own Preacher: Until the End of the World (TPB), which contains issues 8 - 17, and you enter just one record in the Multi-title TPB window for each of the two TPBs, one with a range of 1-7 and the second 8-17, you can leave the part numbers as 1 on each and everything will be correct.

If you enter them as separate records (7 records for Preacher: Gone to Texas (TPB) and 10 records for Preacher: Until the End of the World (TPB), you would have to make sure the part numbers also kept that numbering, otherwise they would be sorted in the following order:  1, 8, 2, 9, 3, 10, etc.

Bottom line is for single title TPBs, enter the issues as a range.  As of version 5.0.99d, this should actually be fixed, but I still think you're better off doing it this way.